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Three elite pageant sisters compete for state title

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Competing in pageants can be intense for anyone, but if you’re competing against your own family, it might be even tougher. That's the case for Miss Shelby County, Miss Bluff City and Miss Memphis.

Arriell, Wendy and Taylor Gipson have been modeling and hitting the runway for as long as they can remember.

The sisters have spent much of their lives competing against other women, but this year will be a little different. They are competing against each other for the title of Miss Tennessee USA.

“We always joke about, 'I’m going to win it, and you got next year,'" said Arriell, who won Miss Shelby County USA.

The oldest of the trio, Arriell, said she announced first she was competing for the title. Shortly after, baby sister Taylor jumped on board, followed by middle sister Wendy.

“My mom she kept encouraging me to do it as well, so I randomly texted them in a group message and said, 'Hey guys, I’m doing it too,'" said Wendy, who won Miss Bluff City USA.

The Gipson sisters said the countless hours of practice and training leading up to the competition has brought them closer as sisters, but they said there’s still a little rivalry between them.

“We said OK, here are our boundaries," Wendy said. "It’s still a competition even though we’re sisters. It’s still a competition at the end of the day.”

“We’re looking through the outfits together," said Taylor, who won Miss Memphis USA. "We’re trying to figure out what swimsuit are we going to wear, what evening gown are we going to have.”

“When one wins, we all win” is their motto. For them, this is more than just taking home the crown but making history being the first three sisters competing for the Miss Tennessee USA title at the same time — all representing the city they know and love.

“At the end of the day, my mother, when she raised us, she really instilled in us that you have to be there for each other," Taylor said.

The ladies will hit the stage Oct. 10 in Clarksville.

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